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Some Recently Added Cases

Re Patterson; Ex parte Taylor [2001] HCA 51 (6 September 2001)

Re Patterson; Ex parte Taylor

Constitutional Law (Cth) - Naturalisation and aliens - Meaning of "aliens" in s 51(xix) - Law empowering cancellation of visa of "non-citizen" - Whether such a law, applied to a British subject who has lived in Australia for over 33 years, is a law with respect to naturalisation and aliens.

Constitutional Law (Cth) - External affairs power - Whether s 51 (xxix) supports application of s 501(3) of Migration Act 1958 (Cth) to the prosecutor, a British subject who has lived in Australia for over 33 years.


Constitutional Law (Cth) - Meaning of "Minister" in s 64 of the Constitution - Whether Parliamentary Secretary constituted the "Minister" for the purpose of s 64 - Whether Parliamentary Secretary constituted "the Minister personally" for the purpose of s 501(4) of the Migration Act 1958 (Cth).

Immigration - Jurisdictional error - Power of Minister to cancel a visa on character grounds under s 501(3) of Migration Act 1958 (Cth) - Prosecutor had been sentenced to a term of imprisonment of 12 months or more and accordingly had a "substantial criminal record" - Substantial criminal record grounds for failure of character test - Prosecutor could not possibly pass the character test - Respondent invited prosecutor to make representations to her to have the decision revoked under s 501C(4) of Migration Act 1958 (Cth) - Only ground for revocation was that prosecutor passed the character test - Whether invitation to make representations evinced misunderstanding of nature of decision - Whether misunderstanding amounted to a constructive failure of jurisdiction.

Immigration - Jurisdictional error - Power of Minister to cancel a visa on character grounds under s 501(3) of Migration Act 1958 (Cth) - requirement that decision be in national interest - Meaning of "national interest"
; - Whether Minister in this case satisfied that decision in national interest.

Singh v Commonwealth of Australia [2004] HCA 43 (9 September 2004)

Singh v Commonwealth of Australia

Constitutional law (Cth) - Legislative powers of the Parliament - Power to make laws with respect to naturalization and aliens - Meaning of "aliens" - Plaintiff born in Australia to non-citizen parents - Infant plaintiff not a citizen under the Australian Citizenship Act 1948 (Cth) - Plaintiff's parents citizens of India - Whether plaintiff an alien under s 51(xix) of the Constitution.

Constitutional law (Cth) - Interpretation - Interpretive theories - Significance of historical context in constitutional interpretation - Use of Convention Debates.

Constitutional law (Cth) - Legislative powers of the Parliament - Whether Migration Act 1958 (Cth), s 198 validly authorises the removal of a non-alien from Australia because that person is a non-citizen under the Australian Citizenship Act 1948 (Cth).

Muin v Refugee Review Tribunal; Lie v Refugee Review Tribunal [2002] HCA 30

Muin v Refugee Review Tribunal

Lie v Refugee Review Tribunal

Administrative law - Constitutional writs - Procedural fairness - Alleged failure to have regard to relevant documents - Alleged failure to provide reasonable opportunity to respond to adverse material - Jurisdictional error for denial of procedural fairness and natural justice.

Immigration - Refugee - Protection visa - Decision by Minister to refuse application for visa - Review of decision by Refugee Review Tribunal - Obligation of Secretary of Department of Immigration and Multicultural Affairs to give relevant documents to Registrar of Tribunal for purpose of review - Nature and extent of obligation - Migration Act 1958 (Cth), ss 418(3), 424(1).

Constitutional law (Cth) - High Court - Federal Court - Review of administrative decision by officers of the Commonwealth - Migration - Refusal to grant protection visa to claimant for refugee status - Requirement of procedural fairness - Alleged failure to have regard to relevant documents - Alleged failure to provide reasonable opportunity to respond to adverse materials - Jurisdictional error - Availability of constitutional relief under s 75(v) and other relief for denial of procedural fairness and natural justice.

Al-Kateb v Godwin [2004] HCA 37 (6 August 2004)

Al-Kateb v Godwin

Immigration - Unlawful non-citizens - Detention pending removal from Australia - No real prospect of removal from Australia in reasonably foreseeable future - Whether detention lawful under Migration Act 1958 (Cth) - Whether detention is temporally limited by purpose of removal - Whether requirement to remove as soon as reasonably practicable implies time limit on detention.

Statutes - Acts of Parliament - Construction and interpretation - Where meaning ambiguous or uncertain - Presumption of legislative intention not to invade personal common law rights.

Constitutional law (Cth) - Judicial power of the Commonwealth - Unlawful non-citizen in immigration detention - No real prospect of removal from Australia in reasonably foreseeable future - Whether provision for indefinite detention without judicial order infringes Chapter III of the Constitution - Whether detention involves an exercise of judicial power of the Commonwealth by the Executive - Whether detention is for a non-punitive purpose.


Constitutional law (Cth) - Construction and interpretation - Whether Constitution to be interpreted to be consistent with international law of human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs v Jia [2001] HCA 17 (29

Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs v Jia

Re Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs; Ex parte Jia

Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs v White

Re Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs; Ex parte White

Immigration - Actual bias - Prejudgment - Cancellation of visa by Minister - Public discussion by Minister of relevance of past criminal conduct to question of good character - Whether exercise of discretion by Minister was affected by bias.

Immigration - Procedural fairness - Reasonable apprehension of bias - Standard of conduct required of Minister exercising powers under Migration Act 1958 (Cth), ss 501 and 502 - Application of principles of bias and apprehended bias to members of executive government contrasted with their application to judges.

Immigration - Cancellation of visa by Minister under Migration Act 1958 (Cth), ss 501 and 502 - Whether powers under ss 501 and 502 can be exercised in a manner contrary to a tribunal decision without a material change in circumstances.

Administrative law - Natural justice - Bias - Actual and imputed - Immigration decision made by Minister - Whether exercise of discretion was affected by bias - Reference to individual case in public broadcast and private letter - Whether Minister's powers may be exercised in a manner contrary to a tribunal decision without a material change in circumstances.


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